I love gardening. I live for the warm days, blooming flowers and fresh vegetables of spring and summer. Traditionally, Virginians wait until after the last frost around mid-April to plant those popular spring and summer vegetables. While March may be a bit early for some plants, did you know there is still plenty to do in your garden in March? Here are just a few things you can do now if you’re itching to get your hands in the dirt – whether you’re trying to enhance curb appeal or feed the family!
Gardening Tasks in March
Get your garden and shrubbery ready to bloom at its best by tackling these tasks in March:
- Trim perennials. Cut perennials like butterfly bushes back to about 4 inches tall to encourage new growth and fruitful blooms.
- Prune evergreens. Check on your boxwoods and holly bushes and trim off any injured foliage from the harsh winter.
- Trim summer flowering trees and bushes. March is the perfect time to check on your roses and hydrangeas. Trim them back to reduce their size if you wish, and trim off dead or damaged stems.
- Cut ornamental grasses. Trim your beautiful, yet unruly, ornamental grasses as close down to the ground as possible. Try tying the tops before you begin trimming to make this task more manageable.
Edibles to Plant in Early Spring
When talking about gardening, many folks want to know what vegetables can be planted early in the season to offer an early harvest. By planting appropriate veggies now and summer veggies later in April, you can enjoy plentiful harvests for months to come! Here are some edibles to plant in March:
- Greens. To have greens for cooking and salads, plant collards, mustard, spinach and kale in March.
- Root vegetables. Leeks and onions do well when planted in March, as do asparagus, peas, turnips, parsnips, radishes and potatoes.
Indoor Tasks in March
Are you dreaming of a lush crop of summer vegetables? Well, in March, you can stop dreaming and start planning your crop! March is a great time to start your vegetable plants from seeds indoors. Plant seeds about six to eight weeks before you plan to transplant them outside. Local home and garden stores feature inexpensive seed starter sets that serve as mini greenhouses, and Pinterest is overflowing with DIY projects for indoor grow lights for larger crops.
Here are a few tips for starting seeds:
- Use a special seed starter potting mix. Seed starter mixes are designed to stay moist and airy and are the ideal setting for seeds to germinate.
- Play close attention to the planting depth. Your package should tell you whether to plant under a dusting of dirt, ¼ inch, ½ inch or even a full inch.
- Arrange for adequate lighting. A sunny window should do if you get enough hours of light. Check each plant’s needs and consider a grow light if necessary, especially if you have many seeds.
- Keep them moist. Seeds need to stay moist to germinate. Keep them covered to retain moisture, and water as often as needed to keep them moist, but not soaked.
I’m so excited to get out into my yard and garden this year. Spring just can’t come soon enough for me! If you’re looking to sell your home this spring, contact me for additional tips on gardening and landscape ideas to increase your home’s curb appeal.